By LA Weekly
By Henry Rollins
By Weekly Photographers
By Shea Serrano
By Nate "Igor" Smith
By Dan Weiss
By Erica E. Phillips
By Kai Flanders
Also playing Saturday:
SPARKS at Royce Hall (see feature); RICKIE LEE JONES & THE VAUDEVILLIANS at Largo at the Coronet; ADAM FREELAND, LUCENT DOSSIER EXPERIENCE, Z-TRIP at Lucent Lamour; GIL MANTERA’S PARTY DREAM at Spaceland; HORROR POPS, SEVEN SHOT SCREAMERS, LONGWAY at Avalon; THE GOURDS at the Mint; BABYFACE, ALL-4-ONE at Club Nokia.
SUNDAY, FEBRUARY 15
MUSIC TAPES, NANA GRIZOL, BRIAN DEWAN AT THE ECHOPLEX
Neutral Milk Hotel’s Julian Koster is no stranger to experimentation. Parts of his near-inscrutable 1999 debut as the Music Tapes, 1st Imaginary Symphony for Nomads, were recorded on a century-old Edison wax cylinder, some tidbits nothing more than a bouncing ball, a cuckoo clock and traffic noise. But something happened in the nine years that passed before a sequel. Last year, Merge released the exceptional Music Tapes for Clouds and Tornadoes, and while its opening song may carry the suspect title “Saw Ping Pong and Orchestra” — and Koster indeed utilizes all three therein (the singing saw is his go-to instrument) — melody and timbre are as important to this record as they were to a certain un-succeeded classic by his former group. (Chris Martins)
Also playing Sunday:
MONDAY, FEBRUARY 16
MISHKA, K’NAAN, THE SWEET REMAINS at the Roxy; BEN LEE at Largo at the Coronet; FOOT VILLAGE, E&E, PUPPY DOG, MAN’S ASSASSINATION, VAMPIRE PUSSY at Pehrspace; LE SWITCH, THE MINOR CANON, THE BREAKUPS, SWIM PARTY at Spaceland; HOLLOYS, RAINBOW ARABIA, PIT ER PAT at the Echo.
TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 17
JUANA MOLINA AT THE TROUBADOUR
Juana Molina’s Un Dia is an offering to those of us tired of the same angry guitars and Xeroxed whiners, self-absorbed coffeehouse girls and monomaniacal rappers who build themselves into genre-specific bunkers and then dig deeper with each successive album. Molina, an Argentinian singer and actress who first gained fame in the late ’80s as a TV comedienne, started releasing records in 1996, but they weren’t funny endeavors. Rather, her early work features her tango-esque, hypnotic acoustic-guitar lines interlaced with feather-pillow electronic rhythms and her singsong feminine whisper. Over the years, though, her music has expanded, even as it’s gotten weirder. Not Bjork-weird, though; Molina still prefers structure to chaos, and on Un Dia, that structure is rhythm, which is sturdier and more textured than on her formative stuff. It’s one of last year’s best records, a subtle electronic creation that’s not silly or overly dramatic. Just pure, beautiful music. This show marks Molina’s first performance in L.A. with a full band, and promises to be a memorable evening. (Randall Roberts)
Also playing Tuesday:
MIRANDA LEE RICHARDS, THE CHAPIN SISTERS, THE MOON UPSTAIRS, BIG SEARCH at Spaceland; MURDER CITY DEVILS at the Henry Fonda Theater; THE SOUL OF JOHN BLACK at the Mint; WE SHOT THE MOON, BIG SURRENDER at the Knitting Factory; RUSKO, CONGOROCK, AC SLATER at the Roxy.
WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 18
ANDREW BIRD, LONEY DEAR AT THE ORPHEUM
Andrew Bird’s success story has to be one of indie rock’s unlikeliest: We’re talking, after all, about a whistling, violin-playing dude from Chicago who has somehow managed to outlast his stint with the Squirrel Nut Zippers by penning impossibly erudite art-folk tunes about fake palindromes and Scythian empires (and then titling them “Fake Palindromes” and “Scythian Empires”). Bird’s new Noble Beast contains no shortage of quirk — “From Proto-Sanskrit Minoans to porto-centric Lisboans,” goes one oft-quoted line in “Tenuousness” — but with its less-cluttered arrangements and increased melodic presence, the album could also be his bi d for an audience that includes more than NPR listeners and Will Shortz devotees. At the Orpheum, expect to rub elbows with NPR listeners and Will Shortz devotees. Loney Dear is the working name of Swedish indie-pop craftsman Emil Svanängen, whose catchy little ditties rarely thrill but usually satisfy. (Mikael Wood)
SIOUX CITY PETE & THE BEGGARS AT THE REDWOOD BAR AND GRILL
There was a time when preachers warned that the blues wasthe Devil’s music, that it was dangerous and would send you straight to Hell, but nowadays it’s usually considered harmless background music at picnics, sporting events and boating tours. But no one will be inviting Sioux City Pete & the Beggars on any restful blues cruises in the near future. These drifters from Iowa hammer down an awful, abrasive, scarifying, rumbling, crude garage-industrial blues racket that’s so hellishly loud, it buries most traces of its ostensible Charley Patton/Robert Johnson/Howlin’ Wolf/Cramps/Gun Club influences in a junkyard racket. Ex–Chicken Hawks guitarist Sioux City Pete stubbornly digs into generally taboo subjects (pedophilia, racism, genocide, Satanism, cannibalism and necrophilia) but not because he’s trying to be shocking or punk-rock offensive; he sees modern-day horror and cruelty as just being part of an unbroken chain that stretches back past the time Johnson first noticed the hellhounds were following him. Another recurring theme is how seemingly gentle, stout-hearted and steady Midwestern farmers are secretly boiling over with homicidal impulses, with Pete bookending his imprecations in raw swaths of distorted slide guitar. These are murder “ballads” that really do sound like murder. (Falling James).
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